KARACHI, July 8: The Karachi Electronic Dealers Association (KEDA) has claimed that they were ready to extend all possible cooperation to the police in controlling the trading of stolen phones at the Saddar Electronics Market. “Police should check the trading taking place on pavements in the mobile phone market as those sitting or standing on pavements and trading the phone sets are not affiliated with the association”, Shahid Ali Sehr, information secretary, KEDA, told Dawn here on Friday.

He dispelled the impression about involvement of shopkeepers and dealers in the business of stolen cellular phones. City police chief Tariq Jamil had stated the other day that 80 per cent trading of stolen mobile phones takes place in the electronic market Saddar.

Mr Sehr said some shopkeepers or dealers might be involved in the business of stolen mobile phones but it was the duty of police to identify those elements.

“We assure the police that they should identify first and we will hand them over to the police in the office of the KEDA”, he said. The handing over of such suspects to the police in the KEDA’s office was logical because the police action in the market might provoke other shopkeepers or any reaction could erupt at the spot, he added.

He claimed that the police had been taking action against the KEDA representatives on the pretext of trading the stolen mobile phones. He further claimed that the KEDA had resisted the evacuation of more than 100 shopkeepers from Al-Haroon Market in Saddar electronics market, which was purchased by some representatives of a previous body of the KEDA in alleged collaboration with some influential on a throwaway price. He said that notices were issued to shopkeepers running their businesses in the shops located at Al-Haroon market.

He said that the KEDA had resisted the move and defended the shopkeepers as they had been running their businesses for long.

The matter was being politicized and a victimization policy was adopted against the present body of the KEDA as some influential had developed intimacy with the representatives of previous body.

He said the present body was elected after 28 years, but the previous representatives were trying to topple the KEDA’s present body and wanted re-election.

He said that the present body was against the business of stolen mobile phones.

“We have coordinated with the home ministry and with their cooperation we have circulated data forms available at all shops.

“The data form is filled in before the sale or purchase of the used phone set. We are following all of the legal formalities agreed mutually between KEDA and the government.”

Mr Sehr said that the police should take the KEDA into confidence and instead of levelling allegations, the police should extend cooperation to the KEDA to eliminate the business of stolen phones.

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